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Cunda Sutta

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Title: Cunda Sutta: Cunda

Summary: Why the world needs both meditators and those who devote themselves to the study of Dhamma.

AN 6.46

PTS: A iii 355

Cunda Sutta: Cunda

translated from the Pali by

Thanissaro Bhikkhu

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On one occasion Ven. Maha Cunda was staying among the Cetis in Sanjatiya. There he addressed the monks, “Friend monks!”

“Yes, friend,” the monks responded to him.

Ven. Maha Cunda said, “Friends, there is the case where Dhamma-devotee monks(1) disparage jhana monks, saying, 'These people are absorbed and besorbed in jhana, saying, “We are absorbed, we are absorbed.” But why, indeed, are they absorbed? For what purpose are they absorbed? How are they absorbed?' In that, the Dhamma-devotee monks do not shine brightly, and the jhana monks do not shine brightly. That is not practicing for the welfare of the masses, for the happiness of the masses, for the good of the masses, nor for the welfare & happiness of human & divine beings.

“Then there is the case where jhana monks disparage Dhamma-devotee monks, saying, 'These people say, “We are Dhamma-devotees, we are Dhamma-devotees,' but they are excitable, boisterous, unsteady, mouthy, loose in their talk, muddled in their mindfulness, unalert, unconcentrated, their minds wandering, their senses uncontrolled. Why, indeed, are they Dhamma devotees? For what purpose are they Dhamma devotees? How are they Dhamma devotees?' In that, the jhana monks do not shine brightly, and the Dhamma-devotee monks do not shine brightly. That is not practicing for the welfare of the masses, for the happiness of the masses, for the good of the masses, nor for the welfare & happiness of human & divine beings.

“Then there is the case where Dhamma-devotee monks praise only Dhamma-devotee monks, and not jhana monks. In that, the Dhamma-devotee monks do not shine brightly, and the jhana monks do not shine brightly. That is not practicing for the welfare of the masses, for the happiness of the masses, for the good of the masses, nor for the welfare & happiness of human & divine beings.

“Then there is the case where jhana monks praise only jhana monks, and not Dhamma-devotee monks. In that, the jhana monks do not shine brightly, and the Dhamma-devotee monks do not shine brightly. That is not practicing for the welfare of the masses, for the happiness of the masses, for the good of the masses, nor for the welfare & happiness of human & divine beings.

“Thus, friends, you should train yourselves: 'Being Dhamma-devotee monks, we will speak in praise of jhana monks.' That's how you should train yourselves. Why is that? Because these are amazing people, hard to find in the world, i.e., those who dwell touching the deathless element with the body.(2)

“And thus, friends, you should train yourselves: 'Being jhana monks, we will speak in praise of Dhamma-devotee monks.' That's how you should train yourselves. Why is that? Because these are amazing people, hard to find in the world, i.e., those who penetrate with discernment statements of deep meaning.”

Notes

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1.

Those devoted to memorizing and analyzing the Dhamma.

2.

Numerical Discourses of the Buddha translates this phrase as ”[those] who have personal experience of the deathless element.” However, AN 9.43 and 44 make a distinction between touching a meditative dimension with the body and knowing it with discernment. In both cases, the experience is direct and personal, and in both it leads to the ending of the mental effluents. Thus, “touching with the body” seems to have a more precise meaning than simple personal experience. It could mean that there is a somatic aspect to the experience or that the awareness of the deathless occupies the same fullness of awareness that had been occupied by the body.

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See also: AN 9.43; AN 9.45; Dhp 259

en/tipitaka/sut/an/an06/an06.046.than.txt · Last modified: 2019/08/14 09:23 by Johann